Monday, September 15, 2008

Lexicon: Sgrafitto

Banksy at the Listen Drop In Center, Rampart Street, New Orleans, LA. September 2008.

British graffiti artist Banksy has been leaving a trail in New Orleans, in his quest to do battle with the city's Gray Ghost, the anti-grafitti vigilanate Frank Radtke. Times Picayune art critic Doug MacCash recently addressed the friction between property owners and graffiti artists on the nola blog. Flickr subscriber anthonyturducken has posted some amazing photographs of the NOLA banksies here and has mapped their locations:

View Larger Map

Federal Way, Washington blogger-activist James Lamb has been using the Internet and GIS to map graffiti in his community. The New York Times and the International Herald Tribune have both published stories on "citizen cartographers", who are exploring new GIS technologies annotated with images, text, video, etc. and significantly changing the world of map-making. One of my favorites is Nikolas Schiller, who extensively uses historic maps, aerial photographs, and other imagery to create kaleidoscopic quilts.

To access archived NY Times or the International Tribune, Tulane University affiliates may use the database Lexis Nexis Academic Universe.

Architecture: sgraffito(Italian)
A type of decoration executed by covering a surface, as of plaster or enamel, of one color, with a thin coat of a similar material of another color, and then scratching or scoring through the outer coat to show the color beneath. Eg. Michelozzo, Palazzo Medici Courtyard, Florence, 1445-1460.
sgraffiti (plural)

Decoration:Graffito (English/OED): A drawing or writing scratched on a wall or other surface; a scribbling on an ancient wall, as those at Pompeii and Rome. Also, a method of decoration in which designs are produced by scratches through a superficial layer of plaster, glazing, etc., revealing a ground of different colour; chiefly attrib., as in graffito-decoration, -pottery, -ware.
Graffiti (plural)

To access the Oxford English Dictionary, Tulane University affiliates may follow the link here.

1 comment:

anthonyturducken said...

i made a google map of the banksies around town.